The cold settled in last week -- and it's not going anywhere any time soon.
The region's heading into its longest cold snap this year since Feb. 6-17. Monday marked the fifth day of below-average temperatures, and the seven-day forecast is showing more of the same.
That means we could be facing a 12-day (or longer) cold snap.
Temps on Tuesday will be 20-25 degrees colder than average, said Storm Team 4 Meteorologist Chuck Bell. The average high this time of year is 56; Tuesday's forecast is in the mid 30s. Just to make things even more chilly, Tuesday's winds will average 15-30 mph, which will keep wind chills in the single digits and teens during the day. The day should be sunny, but the sun will not help warm things up, Bell said.
Wednesday morning will probably be the coldest morning of week. Outlying areas such as the Shenandoah Valley could see single digits; the greater D.C. area will be mostly in the teens and 20s, with downtown temps in the low 20s.
Tuesday and Wednesday will be the coldest days this week, but the recovery will be slow, with the cold sticking around. Highs will be in the low to mid 40s for the rest of the week, about 10 degrees colder than average.
After Monday's rain ends, our next chance won't come until Sunday or next Monday. But a dry cold means you should remember to moisturize and drink plenty of water, Bell said.